The Terrible Truth Behind the Pillars of Creation and Expansion 7

The God of the Deep writhes in his prison, breaking free ever so slowly. You should hurry and defeat the fallen titan… there are greater battles yet to fight.

-Xal’atath, Blade of the Black Empire

Since the moment this quote was first discovered in the World of Warcraft: Legion alpha, I haven’t been able to get the idea that Blizzard might already be teasing expansion seven out of my head. While N’Zoth has been built up as a threat for quite awhile, and is one of the last pre-existing big-name villains we have yet to face, nothing else like the above quote appeared. Until now.

With the release of the Emerald Nightmare raid on live servers yesterday, we’ve seen the full dialogue for the Il’gynoth boss fight. After looking through Il’gynoth’s quotes, not only am I confident in the old Xal’tath whisper as being a hint towards something greater, but I’m starting to think we may know how Legion will end and the next expansion might begin.

Five Predictions for World of WarCraft: Legion

wow-legion-box-art-2Yesterday, World of WarCraft: Legion was announced at Gamescom, and I am hyped! I’m much more cautious than I’ve been with any other expansion announcement, after what happened with Warlords of Draenor. Yet I still can’t help but be really excited. With only two announcement trailers and a single panel, we don’t have too much to go on about Legion‘s storyline and overall path so far. In this absence of information, I’ve taken what we do know to make five predictions on what will happen in the expansion, and where it will lead us to in the future. Find out what these predictions are behind the read-more!

PTR 6.2 First Look: Tanaan Jungle

Hi everyone, it’s the Red Shirt Guy here with some screenshots of the new areas added in patch 6.2.’s first PTR build. We’ll be looking at Tanaan Jungle, and a change to the Alliance garrison.

Pictures after the jump…

Tanaan Intro quest:

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The Hunt for Alleria Windrunner (Warlords of Draenor Beta)

If one builds a Lunarfall Inn (Alliance) or Frostwall Tavern (Horde) in their garrison, they gain access to unique quests given by various figures in WoW lore such as Darion Mograine, Lorewalker Cho, and Aviana. These quests have some interesting background lore; for example Darion is researching the Shadowmoon clan to better understand the Lich King’s origins, and Cho believes there are Titan artifacts hidden in the Everbloom. However there is one quest which has far bigger and more immediate implications. It comes from an unlikely source, a masked night elf simply referred to as “Cowled Ranger,” and she gives a quest titled “The Huntresses.”

More Warlords of Draenor Revamps: Razorfen Kraul and Razorfen Downs

Following on the heels of Blackfathom Deeps’ unexpected return, it appears Razorfen Kraul and Razorfen Downs have been given similar treatments. New npcs, new mechanics (such as traps you must disable in Kraul, or a deadly plague mist covering portions of Downs) and new stories. In Razorfen Kraul, they quillboar are harnessing the powers of strange crystals that may be related to the Twilight’s Hammer, while in Razorfen Downs the scourge works to ressurect the lich Ammenar the Coldbringer.

Unfortunately both instances are heavily glitched. Upon entering the second boss’s room in Razorfen Kraul, the alpha crases. In Razorfen Downs, the first boss cannot be defeated properly, instead respawning after several minutes and preventing you from moving further in due to a wall that’s supposed to go away when the boss dies.

These videos show their dungeon journals (not nearly as complete as Blackfathom’s, Razorfen Downs does not even have model viewing yet) and what portions of the instances I was able to access.

Blackfathom Deeps being Revamped in Warlords of Draenor, the Red Shirt Guy Explores

While exploring the Warlords of Draenor alpha, I found that besides the announced content such as Frostfire Ridge and the new models, there was another very shocking addition. The classic five-man Blackfathom Deeps has been completely revamped. All of the bosses have been replaced (with the exception of Aku’mai and Ghamoo-ra, who both have new models and abilities), along with new npcs, a new story and a strange new scenario-like quest feature.

First we’ll look at the new dungeon journal, then behind the cut, a sixteen minute long run-through of the entire instance. This was filmed in the also to be revamped, but as a level 100 heroic, Upper Blackrock Spire to give you a sneak preview of that as well. There is no indication that Blackfathom Deeps will have any heroic equivalent.

Azeroth’s Change

Good Day. We take a look-back at the first aspects of WoW, and where it may take us in the future. From the main start at World of Warcraft, we were introduced to a dousin of aspects, which now plays a big role in Azeroth. Things changed. We got Cataclysm. The whole world of Azeroth got shattered by Deathwing, leaving it up to the aspects to defeat the dragon once and for all. Thrall also played a big role, even though as he was former Warchief of Orgrimmar.

After the aftermath of Deathwing, there was discovered a new world: Pandaria, the world of peace and pandarens. For nearly 10.000 years, Pandaria had been hidden from the world and not found, until now. Dark magic started to appear after the Horde and the Alliance came to the world, and it was going to get even worse. The new warchief Garrosh Hellscream, was no ordinary Orc. He was an Iron Orc, sent from the lore of his past to haunt the world of Azeroth and destroy everything within it.

He almost came trough with his gore plan, and it was up to us to stop HIM! Until now, Alliance has been fighting with the Horde — trying to end his blood War. They stood together to defeat Garrosh, and will now face a new challenge. They made peace at the throne of former warchief Garrosh, and will now face the challenge in the world of Draenor!

The Iron Horde has once again risen, after Garrosh escaped the prison in Pandaria. He has been sent back to the age where his father was young. It is now up to you to stop the Iron Horde from entering the Dark Portal, and save Azeroth from total destruction! There is now a new warchief of Orgrimmar. Who will be the Alliance’s new King?! The question remains a secret. Step up and fight!

See you on Draenor!

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Siege of Orgrimmar Ending Cinematics Revealed

Thrall n Varian

THE FOLLOWING POST CONTAINS HEAVY SPOILERS AND ME LORE-NERD-ING ABOUT THEM. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

First of all, I must give credit to Availed on Anvilmar-US for the world first Garrosh defeat, Apophasis for the first horde Garrosh defeat, and Silencer for uploading the following videos.

Now, in a first for Blizzard, upon defeating Garrosh, the raid receives a different cinematic depending on their faction. Each version has a scene unique to the Horde/Alliance showing their perspective on what should happen after Garrosh’s defeat.

South Seas Lore: The Eye—Maelstrom

Beneath the swirling vortex of raging arcane magic that is the Maelstrom lies the Eye.  The Maelstrom is the scar that marks the implosion of the Well of Eternity.  Event that happened 10,000 years ago at the end of the War of the Ancients.

Sargeras was about to enter Azeroth, when the champions severed the highborne’s spellwork.  I may have to re-read War of the Ancients Trilogy.  For some odd reason a memory glitch makes me wonder if it destabilized when Deathwing swooped down to take the demon soul from under the highborne’s nose. That would make him a selfish-heroic figure—nvm.

Anyway, the portal was severed and the Well of Eternity imploded. The land sunk around Suramar, and the ocean surrounding the massive landmass of ancient Kalimdor rushed in to fill the immense gap, submerging everything under the waves.

What once was part of a massive land mass, was now known as the Great Sea.  Thus ancient Kalimdor ended up divided into three continents: Kalimdor, Northrend and what is now known as Eastern Kingdoms.  Some higher land remained above the water.  These are the known isles within the Great Sea: Tel Abim, Isle of Kezan, Zandalar Isle, Plunder Isle, Kul’Tiras, Darkspear Islands (now sunk), Hiji Isle, Gillijim’s Isle, Doctor Lapidis Isle, Crestfall, Tol Barad and Zul’Dare.

Is there anything else in The Eye? You would be surprised.  There is indeed.  Beneath the waves are various locations charted by Prospector Brann Bronzebeard during his exploration of the world.  He left Gryphadin with a goblin merchant at the Broken Isles, and with the use of a magical helmet dove into The Eye of the Maelstrom.

The Eye is but the place that once was known as Zin-Azshari (Glory of Azshara). The city built by the Night Elves around the Well of Eternity. A place now sunk and smashed to the bottom of the Great Sea. It lies now in ruins beneath the waves.

The ocean floor has many locations of interest: Nazjatar, Grishan Caverns, Mak’aru, Drowned Reaches, Pillar Deep, The Boiling Terrace, the Scintal Reef and the Rift.

The Boiling Terrace is located to the southeast of The Eye.  It has volcanoes, vents, fissures and emanate dangerous gases that swirl to the surface as large bubbles. To the southeastern edge of the Boiling Terrace is the Drowned Reaches. It is here where all the ships caught by the nigh-magnetic pull of the Maelstrom’s neverending storm vortex end up.  It is a ship graveyard. Undead may be found here.  Not Scourge Undead, but the restless sailors of many races that wander the area either as animated skeletons or zombies.  Any ships caught by the Maelstrom in the past ten thousand years ends up in the Drowned Reaches.

The Rift is the place where the Well of Eternity still exists, smashed beneath the ocean floor into Azeroth’s exposed molten core.  Red and orange light emanates from the fissure on the ocean floor.

The Scintal Reef is a coral reef on the southwest of The Eye.  This is Makrura territory.  Their capital is located within: Mak’aru.

The Grishan Caverns were formed by volcanic activity on the sea floor. The naga stays clear from this area, fearing gargantuan sea creatures may dwell within, such as the Kraken, giant octopi or giant squids—to name a few.

Mak’aru is the capital of the Makrura race—lobsterlike humanoids—who are sworn enemies of the naga.  Mak’aru is built within the Scintal Reef, made of coral terraces and organic-like buildings.  Due to their thousand of years feud with the naga, Prospector Brann Bronzebeard thinks they might serve as allies for a common goal if diplomats could convince those Makrura on the shores to seek an audience with their leaders.

Pillar Deep is on the northeast of The Eye.  It is another thermal vents location that releases steam and gas bubbles.  This place looks similar to the Thousand Needles, with thousands of stone-like pillars nigh reaching the surface—except they are not pillars at all.  They are giant tubeworms. Smaller eyeless worms inhabit the place.

Nazjatar is the capital of the Naga civilization, former Night Elves known as the Highborne.  Their leader is the fabled Queen Azshara, orchestrating and shaping the history of Azeroth from the depths of Nazjatar.  Serving the whims of the Old gods who saved her people and transformed, nah, cursed them to be the Naga.—as revealed in Warcraft: War of the Ancients Archive by Richard A. Knaak.

Nazjatar is built into the walls of The Rift, overseeing the long descent to the molten core where the once Well of Eternity still exists.  Queen Azshara is massive in size. She reigns from the place that was once her palace in ancient Zin-Azshari.

Bestiary
Creatures found in the Maelstrom: Naga, Makrura, Sea Giants, Giant Crabs, Eyeless Worms, Water Elementals, Octopi, Sharks, Hydras, Threshadons, Frenzies, Giant Squid.

The World of Warcraft RPG: Lands of Mystery is very thorough about areas of the South Seas, Northrend and Kalimdor.  For a book published on 2005, it does have a lot of accuracy with what we can find currently in World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King expansion.  Therefore, most of the South Sea content might be accurate with what Blizzard Entertainment may provide fans in a South Seas-themed expansion. Grab your PDF copy of this book here.

South Seas Lore: Zandalar Isle

Zandalar Isle is ruled by King Rastakhan – a jungle troll witch doctor and keeper of troll lore. This island is the home of the Zandalar Trolls who gave us quests for Zul’Gurub to oversee the destruction of Hakkar the Soulflayer. Its capital city is Zuldazar.

To the southwest is Isle of Kezan.  To the north is the Broken Isles, and Westfall to the northeast.

Many huts, totems and ziggurats may be found scattered throughout the isle.  Zuldazar is the biggest troll structure in the world of Azeroth.  Zul’drak pales in comparison.  Prospector Brann Bronzebeard traveled here by Gryphon after his trip to Isle of Kezan. He confused a structure of a series of Ziggurats with a high mountain. A city carved out of stepped pyramids and tiered walls.

All troll tribes around the world of Azeroth send emissaries to Zandalar every six years, a tradition which purpose is to discuss matters that affect all trolls.

Locations
Mount Mugamba is the highest peak on the island. Snow covers the top of it. Ice trolls live at the top of this mountain. Ice-carved totems may be found here.

Bestiary
Hermit Crabs, monkeys, tigers, hydras, lions, Makrura and couatl.

Bestiary
Hermit Crabs, monkeys, tigers, hydras, lions, Makrura and couatl.

Religion
This is what is read on the tablet at the Altar of Zanza in Yojamba Isle, Stranglethorn Vale:

We call upon you, Zanza of Zuldazar.

Bless those that ask for your help.  Loa Zanza, Bless those that would ally with the Zandalarian people.

Aid us in this time of need.  Aid us Loa.  Give us the power to strike down our enemies.  Give us the power to once more defat the Blood god.

These bits of info may be found in the pages of World of Warcraft RPG: Lands of Mystery by White Wolf Publishing.  Most of Northrend regions lore was available in this book two years before Wrath of the Lich King was announced.  This book was published on 2005.